3D Printing uses a Design which has been recreated as a 3D Computer Model.
This 3D CAD model file is then used to create an instructions for a 3D Printer to use.
3D Scanning can be used to help create these 3D Computer Model files.
Using a fine Laser or Light scan of an items surface from many angles, 3D data. is generated in a way similar to radar or sonar, to detect an object’s surface and features from a known location [the scanner].
3D Scanning is computationally intensive (time to process the scanned data) so it is best to decide which is quicker and therefore more cost effective or more precise; 3D Scanning or 3D CAD Modelling.
Creating a 3D Scan can be the best option for objects where the exact detailed* recreation of complex compound curves or surface textures are required (pattens, text, inscriptions), something that is not really humanly or economically possible to recreate.
An example of such detailed* shapes are;
- museum artefacts
- sculpted artworks
- statues, or
- unavailable / discontinued plastic or metal components
At best a human can 3D Sculpt a close approximation but it will not be as exact or dimensionally perfect.
A very positive use of 3D ScannIng is to generate a 3D Template Model to trace around within your CAD Software.
Size is a factor. 3D Scanning works for smaller objects around 150mm sq.
Large Objects are possible up to Human size and even up to whole Buildings, Towns or even Planets! can be scanned using LiDAR or Photogrammetry or Video footage from Drones … but that is another Industry and Process.
Contact us to enquire whether your project can make use of 3D Scanning or Traditional 3D CAD Modelling.